On the basis of reply given by the respondents, some grounds have been prepared for argument on 14.01.2010, which is furnished below :
It is a fact and has been admitted by the respondents in para 5 of the 2nd additional reply statement dated 24.12.10 that “The 6th CPC in para No. 7.6.14 recommended for upgradation of the Pay scale of Rs.5500-9000 to Rs.6500-10500 with a view to bring the Inspector Posts on par with Assistants in CSS and Inspectors and analogous post in CBDT/CBEC.” The same was accepted by the Government. Hence, Inspector Posts are entitled for the grade Pay of Rs.4600 to maintain the parity established by the Central Pay commission with Assistants in CSS and Inspectors and analogous post in CBDT/CBEC.
Grade Pay of Assistants in CSS, which were in the Pay scale of Rs.5500-9000 as on 01.01.2006, was enhanced from Rs.4200 to Rs.4600 vide MOF OM dated 16.11.09 (A-11). 6th CPC in para 3.1.3 (A-20) recommended to maintain parity with the similarly placed personnel employed in field offices and the secretariat. In the recommendation, it was made clear that this parity would need to be absolute up to the grade of Assistants. Hence the parity between Assistants and Inspector Posts must be maintained. The argument that only group B posts in CSS (i.e Section Officer) are comparable with the Group B post in Department of Posts (i.e Superintendent of Post offices), denying the parity between Assistants in CSS and Inspector Posts, is against the recommendation of the 6th CPC.
MOF vide OM dated 13.11.2009(A-9) enhanced the grade Pay of Posts which were in the Pay scale of Rs.6500-10500 as on 01.01.2006 to Rs.4600, which was reproduced in the MOF OM dated 16.11.09 (A-11) and on the basis of that grade Pay of Inspectors in CBDT/CBEC enhanced from Rs.4200 to Rs.4600. It is a fact and has been admitted by the respondents that the Pay scale of Inspector Posts was upgraded to Rs.6500-10500 by the 6th CPC as on 01.01.2006. Thus the Pay scale of Inspector Posts as on 01.01.2006 was Rs.6500-10500 and hence the benefit of OM dated 13.11.2009 must be given to Inspector Posts also, as already given to Inspectors in CBDT/CBEC.
As clarified by MOF vide Annexure A-13, that in case of upgradation of Posts as a result of recommendation of 6th CPC, the grade Pay corresponding to the upgraded Post should be given. It is a fact and has been admitted by the respondents that the Pay scale of Inspector Posts was upgraded to Rs.6500-10500. Also, the corresponding grade Pay w.r.t Pay scale of Rs.6500-10500 is Rs.4600 w.e.f 01.01.2006 as evident from MOF OM dated 13.11.2009 (A-9) and dated 16.11.2009 (A-11). Hence Inspector Posts are entitled for grade Pay of Rs.4600 w.e.f 01.01.2006.
The contention of the respondents that the merger of Inspector Posts and ASPOs is not practically feasible as the Association is requesting for retaining gazetted status for the existing ASPOs, is not having any ground as in the Department of Post itself, the Post of Junior Accounts Officer (JAO), which was having non-gazetted status is merged with Assistant Accounts Officer (AAO) with gazetted status. Moreover, ASP and IPs have similar nature duties. Till today no higher responsibility or duties have been bestowed to ASPOs and no separate duty has been defined for them. Even after conferring Gazetted status no higher responsibility has been given to ASPs.
Inspector Posts should not be downgraded in comparison with their counter parts in CBDT/CBEC and Assistants in CSS only due to existence of an intermediary post in Department of Posts. Parity was given by the 5th and 6th CPC even after observing the intermediary posts and the parity should be maintained. Hence, existence of ASP cadre is not a valid reason to deny the due Grade Pay to Inspector Posts. If the Dept. feels it to be a hindrance for granting the eligible GP to Inspector Posts, then it is for the Dept. to resolve the issue. But it cannot deny the due benefits, which similarly placed Inspectors are enjoying. Department may find out the ways to settle the issue, if they feel it exists, after giving grade Pay of rs.4600 to Inspector Posts. Internal constraints, even if exists as per the view of the Department, cannot be a reason for not implementing a general order.
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